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Government May Auction Off Additional 2G Spectrum

The minister for communications and informational technology, Sachin Pilot, informed the Rajya Sabha that the government is considering the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India's (TRAI) recommendations on 'spectrum pricing' and may auction off surplus spectrum to telecom service providers.

The Department of Telecom had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the defence ministry on May 2009 to ensure time bound vacation of spectrum. So far 10 MHz of 2G spectrum has been released.

2G has become a political bone of contention in the country, in what is being called the '2G spectrum scam'. The Central Bureau of Investigation is contemplating bringing additional charges against A Raja, former telecom minister, for endangering national security.

The CBI estimates the government lost an estimated Rs. 50,000 crore over spectrum licenses, alleging Raja's share has been Rs. 3,000 crore of the proceeds as bribes.

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